Suspect 2 – Dzhokhar Tsarnaev – formally charged in #BostonMarathon bombings

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Via USA Today:

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, still in serious condition with gunshot wounds, was arraigned in the hospital Monday on federal charges in connection with the Boston Marathon bombings that left 3 people dead and more than 180 injured.

Tsarnaev, 19, is specifically charged with one count of using and conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction, resulting in death and one count of malicious destruction of property using an explosive device resulting in death.

The charges carry the maximum penalty of death.

According to a federal complaint, a sworn statement from an FBI agent says surveillance video shows that Tsarnaev placing a knapsack on the ground near the crowd barriers in front of the Forum restaurant and then talking for 18 seconds on his cell phone.

[…]

Tamerlan, a legal U.S. resident, suffered gunshot wounds and injuries from detonating a suicide-bomb vest, but may have succumbed to injuries received when Dzhohkar ran over his body as he fled the scene in a carjacked SUV.

If convicted of the most serious terrorist-related charges, Tsarnaev could face the death penalty under federal statutes, although his age could be a mitigating factor in final sentencing.

Investigators initially chose not to read Tsarnaev his Miranda rights against self-incrimination, opting instead for a rare public safety exception in questioning him. Such exceptions are permitted if there is a need to protect the public from immediate danger.

ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero says the exception applies only when there’s a continued threat to public safety and is “not an open-ended exception” to the Miranda rule.

Otherwise, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said on Monday Boston bombing suspect Dzokhar Tsarnaev will not be tried as an enemy combatant.

Unless that jury is full of bleeding-heart liberals, I don’t see this guy getting anything less than the death penalty for what he, alongside his brother – said to be more “radicalized” – did last Monday.

At 2:50 PM ET today, bells will toll around Massachusetts
in remembrance of the victims of last week’s bombings, which left 3 dead – including 8 y/o Martin Richard – and nearly 200 injured, some critically:

BOSTON — This city is preparing to commemorate the passage of a week since two bombs exploded at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, as people try to resume their lives after days of terror and the surge of relief that followed the killing and capture of the suspects in the attack.

At 2:50 p.m. EDT, the moment of the first blast that shook the city and the nation last Monday, people around the country will stop and observe a moment of silence. Bells will toll across Boston and elsewhere. The Massachusetts State Police said it will broadcast the silence in tribute to the victims of the blasts.

In Washington, President Obama, who visited Boston last week to help the city mourn and heal, will observe the moment of silence, the White House announced Monday morning.

Please continue to keep the victims and their families, including the families of 26 y/o MIT police officer Sean Collier, killed in overnight violence Thursday while in pursuit of the bombers, and 33 y/o MBTA officer Richard Donohue, injured critically – in your thoughts and prayers.

BREAKING: Images of suspects in #BostonMarathon bombings released

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Have you seen these men?

Suspects from Boston Marathon bombings.

Suspects from Boston Marathon bombings.

(Click link above for bigger image)

Here is surveillance video from the Boston marathon:

More photos here. The site is crashing now due to the volume of visitors, but keep checking.

Please contact the Boston police or the FBI if you’ve seen them!


Manchin-Toomey falls short, 4 Dems vote with GOP, Obama throws a tantrum

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Pretty much all you need to know about the defeat of the much-discussed “compromise” amendment from Senators Manchin and Toomey.  Here’s a full list of “defectors” from both sides:

Republicans who defected and voted “yes”:
Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey
Illinois Sen. Mark Kirk
Maine Sen. Susan Collins
Arizona Sen. John McCain

Democrats who defected and voted “no”:
North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp
Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor
Alaska Sen. Mark Begich
Montana Sen. Max Baucus
Nevada Sen. Harry Reid (Reid only voted no for procedural reasons, so that Democrats can call up the provision later on)

You can read our embarrassing celebrity President’s temper tantrum on this here (update: watch here) – complete with a photo demonstrating the use of predictable yet sympathetic political props, who I am not upset with – BTW. I’m disgusted with our President and his party using them, however, as if there are not those on the “other side” of this debate who have intensely personal reasons for not wanting the Manchin-Toomey amendment to pass. As always, the President, straw men firmly in hand, paints the opposition as “bought and paid for” while his is “people-driven.”

What a jerk.

Tweet of the Day:


#WeAreAllBoston – Please pray for Boston and the #BostonMarathon victims (UPDATED

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Unless you’ve been under a rock for the last several hours, you’ve heard about the bombs that went off (raw footage here) near the finish line of the Boston Marathon today. Two have been confirmed dead – including an 8 year old (reportedly), over 100 injured – some severely (lost limbs, per reports).  Another bomb was found later but defused, and fire at JFK library was unrelated to the marathon attacks.

I don’t have any original reporting on this – just wanted to take a moment to express my profound sadness for the victims who died and their families, and also the victims who survived and who are fighting for their lives. My thoughts and prayers are with all.   I hope they find the b*stard or b*stards responsible for this and prosecute them to the absolute fullest extent of the law.

Here’s what the UK papers on the Boston Marathon look like (via @BBCBreaking):

UK papers - front pages

The front pages of tomorrow’s UK papers.

We are all Boston.

Update – 7:19 PM: Important information:


Gone but not forgotten: Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher passes away at 87

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Sad news this morning from Britain:

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, an outspoken woman known to many as “The Iron Lady,” has died at 87 after suffering a stroke.

“It is with great sadness that Mark and Carol Thatcher announced that their mother Baroness Thatcher died peacefully following a stroke this morning,” Thatcher spokesperson Lord Bell said in a statement.

Thatcher led Britain’s Conservatives to three election victories from 1979 to 1990, the longest continuous period in office by a British prime minister since the early 19th century. Alongside former U.S. President Ronald Reagan, Thatcher battled against communism and saw the Berlin Wall get torn down in 1989.

On Monday, British Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his trip to several European countries after the announcement of Thatcher’s death.

“We have lost a great leader, a great prime minister and a great Briton,” Cameron said in a statement.

Buckingham Palace said Queen Elizabeth II was sad to hear the news of Thatcher’s passing, adding that she would be sending a private message of sympathy to the family today.

Downing Street said the Queen has authorized a ceremonial funeral — a step short of a state funeral — to be held at St. Paul’s Cathedral.

It said the funeral will be attended by a “wide and diverse range of people,” and the service will be followed by a private cremation. But it did not provide further details on the timing of the service, saying only that the arrangement are “in line with the wishes” of Thatcher’s family.

During 11 bruising years as prime minister, Thatcher transformed her country by a ruthless dedication to free markets and infuriated European allies. She transferred large chunks of the economy from the state hands to private ownership.

The former PM, alongside our great former President – the late Ronald Reagan – are among the most inspirational and fearless leaders of our time who, although gone, will always be studied, analyzed, fondly remembered, and highly respected. Their beliefs in individual freedom over centralized government were strong and formed a permanent bond between the two in what became a storied alliance and personal friendship, which stood the test of time.

Rest in peace, Baroness Thatcher, and may God bless your family and your country at this bittersweet time.

Former Gov. Sanford to face runoff for #SC1 GOP nomination

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He had multiple opponents in the primary, but because he didn’t make it to 50%, Sanford will face a runoff next month:

RT @Politics1com: SC CD-1: Ex-Gov Mark Sanford finished first in 16-way GOP primary with 37%; to face ex-Charleston Co Councilman Curtis Bostic in 4/2 runoff.

The one who wins the GOP runoff will go on to face Elizabeth Colbert-Busch, sister of Stephen Colbert. She won the Democrat primary with 96% (virtually no opposition). That said, Senator Tim Scott’s former district is heavily GOP, so whoever wins the runoff is likely to win that seat in the fall.

As to why Sanford got so many votes after the affair scandal which nearly cost him the Governor’s chair, your guess is as good as mine. Maybe his “redemption” campaign, ran in a state that is deeply religious, won people over.

Ultimately, we’ll find out next month if it worked or not. Stay tuned…

Well, there goes the #guncontrol narrative: Armed guard at Atlanta school stops shooter

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One of the arguments gun control advocates have made in the wake of the massacre at the Sandy Hook elementary school is that an armed defender would do no good, perhaps be even more dangerous to children and staff than simply hiding, or… something. (1)

I guess the administrators of Price Middle School in Atlanta didn’t get the memo, because an armed security guard disarmed a psycho student with a gun, preventing a potential slaughter:

Atlanta’s police chief says an armed officer working at a city middle school where a student was shot was able to disarm the suspect, also a student, moments after the shooting. 

Authorities say a 14-year-old boy was shot in the back of the neck Thursday at Price Middle School and his injury does not appear to be life-threatening. The suspect was taken into custody.

Once again, the best defense against a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.

via Dana Loesch.

RELATED: This isn’t the only time an armed defender has saved lives: an off-duty cop recently prevented a workplace massacre in Texas, while Columbine might well have been much worse, had it not been for the presence of an armed deputy on campus.

Footnote:
(1) Maybe they’ve seen that bizarre DHS “What to do in a mass-shooting situation” video.

Edit: On rereading the original article, there’s nothing to clearly indicate the guard was an off-duty police officer, though many “armed resource officers” are police working a second job. I’ve altered the text for accuracy’s sake.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

Officials: Rep. Tim Scott to be named as Jim DeMint’s Senate replacement

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YES!! Via the NYT:

9:47 a.m. | Updated Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina has chosen Representative Tim Scott to replace Jim DeMint in the United States Senate, according to Republican officials. The move will make Mr. Scott the first black senator from the state since the late 19th century. Ms. Haley is expected to make her announcement at noon in South Carolina, according to officials.

For Republicans, Mr. Scott, who lives in Charleston, offers a unique story and background, one that is in scant supply in their party right now. Raised by a single mother, he was, by his account, a lost child who struggled with school and with life until he a Chick-fil-A franchise owner who took him on as a protégé, schooling him in conservative principles.

“Coming from a single-parent household and almost flunking out of high school,” Mr. Scott said in 2010, during his bid for the House, “my hope is I will take that experience and help people bring out the best that they can be.”

Just last week Mr. Scott, who has served in a freshman leadership role in the House, packed up his freshman-size office for bigger digs.

I freaking love it. Can’t wait for the liberal freak out to commence! Grab the popcorn, folks. ;-)

Congrats, Rep. Scott! I know you will represent South Carolina honorably in the US Senate.

Phineas Butts In: And it turns out ST didn’t have to wait long at all for the “freak out” to start. Tolerant, open-minded leftists were already crying  “Uncle Tom,” “token,” and “house negro” before the news had even time to cool a bit. I guess “judging by the content of their character” only applies if the character is liberal.

Meanwhile, congratulations to Senator-designate Scott. I know you’ll do a great job for South Carolina and the nation. And congratulations to Governor Haley, too, for making a fine choice.

26 dead, including 20 children, in Newtown, CT elementary school shooting massacre

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Absolutely horrific.  Stunning. Heartbreaking.  Devastating.   

20 schoolchildren between the ages of 5-10. Terrorized. Murdered in cold blood.

Please drop what you’re doing right now and say a prayer for the families of the victims. And hug your little ones tight when they get home from school today. For that matter, hug all your loved ones today – or call them to tell them you love them if they’re not close enough by to hug. Life is so very, very fragile.

Prayers

Susan Rice withdraws from Sec. of State consideration – but is Chuck Hagel in?

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Too bad, so sad, buhbye:

United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice on Thursday withdrew her name from consideration to be appointed secretary of state by President Barack Obama.

“If nominated, I am now convinced that the confirmation process would be lengthy, disruptive and costly – to you and to our most pressing national and international priorities,” Rice wrote in a letter to the president. “That trade-off is simply not worth it to our country. … Therefore, I respectfully request that you no longer consider my candidacy at this time.”

Rice’s chances were damaged after her Sept. 16 appearances on Sunday morning TV shows defending the administration’s handling of the attacks on the American Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.

“The position of Secretary of State should never be politicized,” Rice wrote to Obama. “As someone who grew up in the era of comparative bipartisanship and as a sitting U.S. national security official who has served in two U.S. administrations, I am saddened that we have reached this point.”

Cry us all a river, gal. A lot of us are saddened that you and many key members of this administration refused to be up front with the truth about the motivation behind the Benghazi murders and instead chose to blame an American citizen exercising his First Amendment rights rights.  A man who will forever have to look over his shoulder due to threats from Islamofascists, thanks in large part to this administration’s disgusting use of him as a scapegoat .

The American people deserve the real story on this, and so do the families of the victims.

And on the same day Rice withdraws, former Senator Chuck Hagel’s (R-NE) name is now front and center as a possible leading contender for state:

Former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel has emerged as the leading candidate to become President Barack Obama’s next secretary of defense and may be nominated as soon as this month, according to two people familiar with the matter.

agel, who served as an enlisted Army infantryman in Vietnam, has passed the vetting process at the White House Counsel’s office, said one of the people. The former Nebraska senator has told associates that he is awaiting final word from the president, said the other person. Both requested anonymity to discuss personnel matters.

Other contenders are Michele Flournoy, former defense undersecretary for policy, and Ashton Carter, deputy defense secretary, administration officials have said.

Obama invited Hagel, 66, to the White House on Dec. 4 to discuss the position with him, according to an administration official. The president hasn’t made a final decision, said another official. Both asked for anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney today declined to comment on whether Obama is considering Hagel, saying only that the two-term onetime lawmaker was widely respected.

I’m not comfortable with this at all, for these reasons and then some.  Your thoughts?